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Researchers To Perform Necropsy On Whale Found Near Half Moon Bay

The whale was first seen floating near Pillar Point Harbor on Wednesday, but researchers had to wait until the animal washed ashore before starting the necropsy.

Photo credit: Jeff Clark of Mavericks Surf Shop in Half Moon Bay.
Photo credit: Jeff Clark of Mavericks Surf Shop in Half Moon Bay.
Researchers from the California Academy of Sciences are expected to perform a necropsy Friday on a deceased humpback whale that has washed ashore at Surfer's Beach near Half Moon Bay, according to the Marine Mammal Center

Center spokeswoman Sarah Van Schagen said researchers hope to find the cause of death of the baby whale. 

She said the necropsy could also help researchers learn more about the animal, the ocean environment, where it was headed and why it ended up in the bay. The mammal's blubber can be used in toxicology studies, and its bones can be used in museum displays. 

She said she wasn't aware of a timeframe on when the whale will be removed, but she said the necropsy should take at least several hours. 

The whale was first seen floating near Pillar Point Harbor on Wednesday, but researchers had to wait until the animal washed ashore before starting the necropsy. 

While the whale has drawn a large crowd of beach onlookers the past few days, local surf shop owner Jeff Clark said Thursday he was concerned the decomposing mammal could attract sharks to nearby surf spots. 

The Mavericks Surf Shop owner said in a Facebook posting he was concerned for surfers' safety if the whale wasn't removed from the area immediately.

--Bay City News


A Delargo May 24, 2014 at 12:34 PM
OK, I'll say it again for this duplicate article.... A couple thoughts on this article.... Can someone simply tow the poor thing a few more miles out, lance it to relieve the gas and let it sink to it's rest. "several agencies to assess the whale's status and determine how to respond" -- Good lord, I think a homeless person washing up would get much less attention. And who is paying for all this ? All the animal rights people out there have no issue with multiple agencies dissecting and eviscerating this poor thing.
Marilyn Ledoux May 24, 2014 at 02:20 PM
I hope researchers will include a check for radiation as the whale washed up near the area where high levels of "natural" but still harmful radiation was found. If no one looks for it in the increasing numbers of dead marine life (baby elephant seals, star-fish, etc), the so-called experts will continue to say radiation is not causing harm.
Sal Anthony May 31, 2014 at 05:21 PM
Libs killed it

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